oscar picks!

by sam on 02/24/2008

Two things I’m very excited about this year in relation to the Oscars. First, that I’m actually in the US, so I can watch it on something other than YouTube, and second, Jon Stewart! with writers!

So, getting this in just under the wire…my oscar picks before tonight’s ceremony.

Best Picture: Atonement, Juno, Michael Clayton, No Country for Old Men, There Will be Blood

The only one of these I’ve actually seen to date is Michael Clayton, which I’m partial to (as I would be to any movie that was shot on location in my office), but I think that, while it would win in any other year, this year it’s up against No Country… and There Will be Blood, which have all of the momentum. It’s either one’s game, but I’m checking off No Country… on my ballot.

Best Actor: George Clooney (Michael Clayton), Daniel Day-Lewis (There Will be Blood), Johnny Depp (Sweeney Todd), Tommy Lee Jones (In the Valley of Elah), Viggo Mortensen (Eastern Promises).

This is clearly Day-Lewis’s to lose.

Best Actress: Cate Blanchett (Elizabeth: The Golden Age), Julie Christie (Away From Her), Marion Cotillard (La Vie en Rose), Laura Linney (The Savages), Ellen Page (Juno)

All the buzz goes to Christie, so that’s who I’m picking on my ballot.

Best Supporting Actor: Casey Affleck (The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford), Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Men), Philip Seymour Hoffman (Charlie Wilson’s War), Hal Holbrook (Into the Wild), Tom Wilkinson (Michael Clayton)

My brother and I actually watched The Assassination of Jesse James… last night, and thought it was very good. Very long, but very good. It’s too bad that Affleck doesn’t have a shot in hell since he’s up against the charm (and killing) machine of Javier Bardem, and the lifetime achievement awardiness of Hal Holbrook. I’m picking Bardem.

Best Supporting Actress: Cate Blanchett (I’m Not There), Ruby Dee (American Gangster), Saoirse Ronan (Atonement), Amy Ryan (Gone Baby Gone), Tilda Swinton (Michael Clayton).

Hmm. This is a tough one. I think Swinton’s got the buzz right now, so that will probably be the token award that goes to the Clayton franchise.

Best Director: Paul Thomas Anderson (There Will be Blood), Ethan & Joel Coen (No Country for Old Men), Tony Gilroy (Michael Clayton), Jason Reitman (Juno), Julian Schnabel (The Diving Bell and The Butterfly)

The Coen Brothers. They’re due.

Best Documentary Feature: No End in Sight, Operation Homecoming: Writing the Wartime Experience, Sicko, Taxi to the Dark Side, War/Dance.

Don’t really know here. It could be Sicko for two reasons – one, it’s Michael Moore, who is likely the only filmmaker any of the voters have heard of before, and two, it’s (surprisingly, given that it’s Moore) the only film that doesn’t appear to be about the war.

Best Animated Feature: Persepolis, Ratatouille, Surf’s Up

My heart says Persepolis, but my head says Ratatouille.
I’m voting for Persepolis, but I’m not expecting to win.

Best Original Screenplay: Brad Bird; story by Bird, Jim Capobianco and Jan Pinkava (Ratatouille), Diablo Cody (Juno), Tony Gilroy (Michael Clayton), Tamara Jenkins (The Savages) Nancy Oliver (Lars and the Real Girl).

This one is almost definitely going to Diablo Cody.

Best Adapted Screenplay: Paul Thomas Anderson (There Will be Blood), Ethan & Joel Coen (No Country for Old Men), Christopher Hampton (Atonement), Ronald Harwood (The Diving Bell and the Butterfly) Sarah Polley (Away From Her)

Again, I think this is a battle between PT Anderson and the Coen Brothers. Slight edge to the Coens, since this is their year, but I wouldn’t rule out PT.

That’s all. Big awards only. I have no way to judge things like editing and art directing, particularly since I haven’t seen a lot of the films.